Congratulations on getting sober! That’s the first step to taking back your life. I’m am sorry to say, however, that there is no better doctor/medication/facility for your loved one. Ive come to that conclusion after many painful disappointments. You can still live a joyful peaceful life. You can start right now in this moment as you read this. All you have to do is let go. Don’t live on hope that things will get better in the future. Take your life back now and live it. Isn’t that one of the twelve steps? Let go and let God? Easier said than done, I know, but it’s the only way. It takes practice. I have practice every day. As they say in AA, one day at a time. In addition to saying “I won’t drink today,” say today I will feel joy. Today I won’t try to change anything, I’ll just let it be what it is. I will feel compassion and love, no matter what happens.
Kiki. I’ve thought a lot about your post. In full transparency, at first it bothered me. Nothing better? Give up that hope?
But I’ve reflected on this quite a bit and think you may be spot on. But I’d like to clarify your point to ensure we’re all learning from one another.
Your point seems to truly be “Don’t set your hope(s) on fixing the problem.” On this we agree. It’s a great nuance to understand. If my daily hope is based solely on finding the cure for my child (better MED, treatment, doc, living situation, friends, etc) then I’m shortchanging my own life.
To truly be joyful, our hope must be built on something unbreakable. Colossians 3:2 says it well, “Set your mind on things above (faith in something bigger than us) versus things on earth.”
Seizing joy and taking our lives back is possible. We never give up hope of finding a cure, or a life-worth-living for our loved ones. But to your point, we can NOT hang our lives on this sole hope. We must have hope in something far greater.
Thanks for the challenging post.
Exactly. In full disclosure, my son is a very difficult case. Dual diagnosis—sz and drug abuse. The weird thing is that I knew from the time that he was an infant that there was something wrong with him. He never stopped crying. He started using illegal drugs (THC) at age 12 and had his first psychotic break at age 25. I spent 35 years looking for the right diagnosis/doctor/medication/psychologist/psychiatrist/therapeutic boarding school/rehab/psychiatric hospital. All the while feeling like an utter failure as a mother. So many times I hoped that THIS thing was the answer, only to have my hopes dashed. There were times when he would be doing better. My heart sank when the phone rang or there was a knock at the door. Somehow I knew it was bad news before I answered. I was so depressed at times that despite taking anti depressants, I thought of taking my own life. The only thing that stopped me was concern for the effect it would have on him, and later on his two children—my grandchildren. Finally, I got so sick of living with myself I decided I was going to have to either commit suicide or find another way out of this hell. I read a book called The Untethered Soul by Michael Singer. It’s a short book and kind of simplistic compared to the problems I was dealing with, but it sparked my imagination. What if I could train myself to think differently? What if I could let go of the idea that my life and happiness depended on finding a solution to his problems? What if I could just feel love and compassion for him without feeling like I have to change him or that I am responsible for his condition? What if I could see the beauty and joy in life instead of just the misery? I embarked on a journey. It was literally a matter of life and death for me, so I went all in.
One of the things I had to learn—and I’m still learning—was to give up hope. Hope that something will change puts your happiness on hold and let’s it rest on things outside your control. That’s not to say you shouldn’t try to help your loved one, but you have to let go of attachment to how it turns out. I call it practicing radical acceptance—accepting whatever comes your way with equanimity, good or bad.
About the same time I was starting on this path, I saw this. I hope it is of some help to you. Not sure if the picture will load here or not, but it is a quote: “the wound is the place where the light enters”
Beautiful well said thank you for sharing